It's been awhile since I've used this space to write freely, as a sort of spontaneous uncensored thinking out loud stream-of-consciousness beat poet inspired diary. I've always enjoyed that free flowing style, except I'm probably too conservative to be a bohemian, but too liberal to be a conservative. What?
I have felt a little stuck here on this blog as of late. Not sure how to proceed. Not sure what to put up here, and what to leave out. Have been doubting the validity and value of my posts. Wondering what is the point. Is this helpful in any way to anyone other than myself, and is it even helpful to myself? Or are my posts primarily pointless self-indulgences, intellectual flatulence, that really isn't all that intellectual, or intelligent...just me restating the obvious as if it were the most brilliant discovery of the century over and over again in an endless loop?
You could say that I have been having doubts about this, not sure why I'm doing this, and not sure if I want to continue doing this. I know that I have written about it before, because I have had these doubts before, and perhaps my post about Why I Blog would be a good place to start, as a reminder, as an explanation, as a reference point of what I thought about this before. But as time goes by, I wonder if my old reasons for doing this are still valid, or if I should just pack it all up and call it quits for good.
Many people keep a blog for the express purpose of sharing useful information, putting together an informative collection of essays intended for mass consumption. Most blog posts you find, that are of the informative essay category, whether it be about philosophy, politics, current events, or whatever, are seldom innovative or original, but more so tend to be a rewording of information that is already available elsewhere. Sometimes this rewording is an entertaining pleasure to read, but nonetheless the information at the heart of it, is nothing new.
There isn't anything necessarily wrong with that, as doing so is a way for the writer to share what they know, to keep a record of what they've learned, even if the ideas are not original, or uniquely their own. People usually selectively blog about whatever is currently on their mind, based on something they recently watched, read, experienced, and have been thinking about. But the problem is that when you take out the personal story behind it and simply write about stuff that has already been written about before, without connecting it to your own personal life, it seems kind of hollow and machine-like, like just another unoriginal dime a dozen blog. You may as well be a parrot.
Unless you've got something entirely new to say, a cutting edge insight, a revolutionary innovation, or a creative work of fiction, the only other thing that would imbue your writing with originality, is the personal memoir. Writing about your own life, connecting other peoples ideas, the things you read, watch, and think about to your own personal life, and illustrating that in your writing.
To me that is what a blog is best suited for, being a personal diary. And in my opinion, the most original and the most interesting type of blog posts, tend to be the autobiographical ones, the personal memoirs. Because even though people often share similar ideas and experiences with one another, no one's life is absolutely identical to anyone else's, each life is unique and special in its own way, and cannot be duplicated by anyone else.
I'm leaning more in that direction, of blogging as personal memoir. Of approaching this blog more like a diary, not just of philosophical and inspirational ideas, but also including more of the personal and mundane details of my life. Although I tend to be more interested in the philosophical over the mundane, but I especially like it when the two are creatively blended together, when philosophical ideas are personalized, and told as a story, true to your own life, rather than being a completely depersonalized scholarly essay. Of course you could say, isn't that what this already is? Yes and no, but I'm thinking I want it to be even more of a personal memoir than it has been, philosophical only in the sense that my personality is naturally philosophical, but above all personal, in it being a story of my life.
What is this blog? I would say the defining characteristic of this blog, is that more than anything else, it is a memoir chronicling my personal journey toward self-education and self-improvement. That's pretty much what this is. Because that is really what I think about more than anything else. Except the problem is that I'm stuck between the prospect of revealing too much and not revealing enough. I don't want to reveal too much that it would make me feel uncomfortable, or compromise my privacy. And I don't want to conceal too much, that would leave out a substantial part of the story, making it hollow and inauthentic.
So that is the primary gist of the problem, as it pertains to blogging as personal memoir: defining the limits of this blog, about what types of things to include, and what to leave out. Because you know, once it's out there, it's out there for good, there's no going back. Even if you delete it, doesn't mean there's not another copy saved somewhere else that is outside your control. These are important things to think about for anyone considering blogging as personal memoir.